This event at City Hall was just one of the plentiful events happening all over and around the Denver area on New Year's Eve last Saturday night - a testament to the strength and vibrance of the local music scene. With that in mind, there really was no wrong answer to how to spend the evening, as people made whatever choices and decisions that would best suit their individual needs. I can say for sure though, that the choice I made definitely worked out great for me, as I was able to ring in the new year with great music and great friends.


The night was presented by Lipgloss founder boyhollow, and thus he and the local support for the night (London Dungeon and Shannon von Kelly) played out music in a familiar way - the three names rotated DJ sets every half hour up until just before midnight, in the same manner that DJs will play at the Friday night weekly party at La Rumba, Lipgloss.

boyhollow, Thrashton Kutcher & Van Kalsing (London Dungeon), Shannon von Kelly

All three names kept the night going with seamless mixes drawing from a variety of music - mostly indie dance, some rock, and bits of electro, but a variety of other styles were also heard. And as the event promised, the evening's party was a no dubstep, no continuous banger zone, meaning the premise of the night was to just come and have fun to music without anything getting too obnoxious - it was a great alternative to many of the other offerings that were going on around town, and it meant the great crowd that came to party that night were also all on the same page.

Reuben Wu (of Ladytron)

After the countdown came and it officially became the new year, the headliner came out to do his bidding on the DJ decks. Ladytron's Reuben Wu came into the booth and began to lay down a a very danceable DJ set that kept the party going and also hinted to what kind of music Ladytron themselves may enjoy. He picked up the energy that the openers built up and sent up soaring by mixing in some high energy dance tracks. I always love when I get to see someone in a band throw down a DJ set, because it offers a sort of window into their musical mind, and some, like Reuben Wu really do understand the art of DJing and can mix a set very well.

The entire NYE DJ crew

Some people may wonder why many enjoy going to see DJ sets, after all, they are just playing other people's music, right? That may be true, but there is a lot more to it that makes DJs who do it right much more than just a human jukebox and thus a bit of an artist themselves. No, I don't consider DJs rock stars - rock stars are rock stars and DJs are DJs, but much like a rock star DJs have to understand how certain music will cause a crowd to react, and DJs must understand the relationship between songs to achieve and create a certain musical flow. In essence, I believe good DJs are really just some of the biggest fans of music - they are ones who will constantly be keeping their ears open and trying to figure out how to reassemble scattered pieces of music into something whole. That's the reason why I can have just as much fun watching a DJ set as I can a live musician, since as long as they are good at their craft, the end effect is just the same.

Saturday night's party at City Hall had just what I needed to have a great time ringing in the new year. Not only was the music great and the people behind providing it did so very well, but it was a night spent with a room packed full of like-minded, fun-loving friends, and I can't think of a better way to celebrate a holiday than among people like that. If you were there that night, I'm sure you felt similarly, and if you weren't there, I hope wherever you were you could say the same thing. As long as you can say that, no matter where you were you had to have had a great time. Happy new year to you all, and I hope 2012 is your best year yet!

See more pictures from this show in the Facebook photo album. Like the Concerted Effort page and stay up to date.

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